California is home to the largest concentration of high-technology industries in the world and is a global center for entertainment and animation. The IDEAS Entertainment Studio explores the intersection of the built environment and entertainment, integrating large-scale media, interactivity and robotics to animate cities, buildings and spaces. This studio uses narrative and immersive approaches to the design of environments to consider the material expression of popular cultures.
2018-19 IDEAS Entertainment Studio with Jimenez Lai
Architecture and Storytelling: Worlds in Other Worlds
"Architecture tells stories, and human stories are enhanced by architecture. If architecture (hardware) is a backdrop for humanity (software), my focus is the oscillation between the many worlds these two ends of the spectrum imply. Architecture is a cultural project that encompasses art, cinema, storyboards, entertainment - all human communication. There is no better place to explore storytelling than Los Angeles.”
1. “above, over” (supraorbital) or “beyond the limits of, outside of” (supramolecular, suprasegmental).
Architecture is a platform for me to tell stories from a multimedia approach. From comic books, small buildings, full-scale installations, short films, big models, or field drawings – my projects have always focused on the characters of architecture, as well as architecture as characters. There is a cultural discourse within the graphic, material, and environmental qualities that allows us to contemplate politics, philosophy, pedagogy, and performances through a medium that is architecture.
For example, Citizens of No Place (2012) was a graphic novel that dove deep into the impacts of many plausible realities. One recurring subplot in this book is a story about spaceships, a home for a human journey to another planet traveling near the speed of light. The realities of intergalactic space travel in turn allowed me to ask questions about the status of gravity (orientation-less drawings), envelope (non-expansive urbanism), technology (total artificial environments), metaphysics (time-space continuum) and so much more.
The entertainment studio is a step beyond pure speculations – I propose to work with storyboards, models, and short films to reflect upon the world we already live in. As a long lens looking back at earth, I would like this studio to be pedagogically well-grounded and provide a strong overview of the contemporary architects working today. While expanding the capacity of architects to engage in storytelling techniques.
We will work with experts within the film industry to enhance our skillsets. Being in Los Angeles, we are in the de facto capitol city of American cinema. Many of our allies in the film industry are within reach, and we can take this opportunity to contemplate the effects of contemporary media culture, including YouTube.
Additionally, we will reach out to organizations such as SpaceX to make this research a grounded conversation with experts within the field. From possible field trips to interviews with experts within the field, we will fine-tune the realisms within the stories we will tell. We will develop our year-long effort into a series of publication proposals.
Architecture tells stories, and human stories are enhanced by architecture. If architecture (hardware) is a backdrop for humanity (software), my focus is the oscillation between the many worlds these two ends of the spectrum imply. Architecture is a cultural project that encompasses art, cinema, storyboards, entertainment – all human communication.